A show of con­fi­dence

Herald Sun - Motoring - - Industry News - Paul Gover Na­tional edi­tor

SOME heavy hit­ters from the global car busi­ness are in Syd­ney this week. The world­wide chiefs of Mazda and Nis­san have hit the har­bour­side city and so has the man who heads all safety devel­op­ment for MercedesBenz, Dr Ul­rich Mellinghoff.

Phil Popham, the trump at Land Rover in Bri­tain, is also Down Un­der.

What’s the oc­ca­sion? It’s the first run­ning of the Aus­tralian In­ter­na­tional Mo­tor Show.

It has been to­tally re-cre­ated since the truce be­tween the ri­val Mel­bourne and Syd­ney shows, and there is a plan to make it a global event al­ter­nat­ing be­tween the cities.

When it goes to Mel­bourne it will be in the mid­dle of next year, al­low­ing it breath­ing space on the in­ter­na­tional show cal­en­dar and help­ing to give it an Asia-Pa­cific fo­cus.

The signs are good. Ford re­gards the show as a global event and has sched­uled the world­wide un­veil­ing of its new Ranger pickup for Syd­ney to­day. Mazda is do­ing the same with its BT-50.

There is all sorts of ac­tion at the show, from the first Aus­tralian ap­pear­ance of the Lexus LF-A su­per­car to a cou­ple of show spe­cials from Mercedes-Benz. The Land Rover Evoque will be seen for the first time, there is a new model from Subaru and a po­ten­tial fu­ture hero— still se­cret — on the Suzuki stand.

The show re­flects more than shiny new cars and dis­plays at Dar­ling Har­bour.

It’s a sign of the whole car busi­ness pulling to­gether, the strength of the mo­tor in­dus­try at when much of the global busi­ness— par­tic­u­larly in the US and Bri­tain— is still strug­gling, and proof that peo­ple are still in­ter­ested in cars.

We will have a full wrap on the show next week, with in­stant up­dates to­day at www.cars­guide.com.au

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